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JWC: Germany humiliate Egypt to set up clash against Argentina

Six-time champions Germany thrashed Egypt 10-0 in the 2023 Men’s Hockey Junior World Cup (JWC) today for the biggest victory of the tournament so far and set up a quarter-final clash against defending champions Argentina.

The win at the Bukit Jalil National Hockey Stadium, a recovery from the 0-2 defeat to France on Wednesday, enabled Germany to finish second in Group B with six points, behind group winners France (9 points), who earlier edged South Africa 5-4. Germany had earlier beaten South Africa 5-3.

In the one-sided affair, Nikas Berendts, 21, claimed his second ‘Man of the Match’ honour with his hattrick, finding the target from a 14th-minute penalty corner, field goal in the 50th minute and another penalty corner in the 58th minute.

Florian Sperling (10th & 25th) and Liam Holdermann (17th & 22nd) scored a brace each through field goals, while Jakob Brilla (19th), Michel Struthoff (32nd) and Paul Glander (42nd) converted a penalty corner each to complete the world number two’s goal scoring feat.

Germany, the tournament’s most successful team, had thrashed Egypt 11-0 in the 2021 JWC group stage in Bhubaneswar, India, but missed the title after going down 2-4 against Argentina in the final.

The two finalists will renew their rivalries in the quarter-finals on Tuesday, and Germany’s head coach Rein Van Eijk is expecting another mouth-watering clash.

“Our main focus in today’s match was to push the tempo as high as possible. I have to compliment the team… it was only for a couple of minutes early in the game when we were a little bit lazy in decision-making and defending. But overall we did well.

“However, so many things need to be improved before playing Argentina. So for now it is a matter of preparing as well as possible for Argentina because it is going to be a hard game,” he said in a post-match press conference.

France topped the group with nine points after beating South Africa 5-4, with all goals coming in the first half.

Five players were on the scorecard for France, the last edition’s bronze medallists, namely Jules Verrier in the first minute, Stanislas Branicki (4th), Gaspard Denis (15th), Mathis Clement (22nd) and Louis Haertelmeyer (27th).

World number 10 South Africa replied through Cameron Le Forestier’s brace from field goals in the 21st and 25th minutes, while Hans Neethling (14th) and Caleb Oliphant (15th) converted a field goal and penalty corner respectively.

France’s coach Matthias Dierckens labelled the first-half action as ‘crazy’ when both teams exchanged goals before appearing tired in the second half.

“I think if both teams had kept the pace in the second half, we could have ended with a score of 9-8.

“My objective is to qualify for the quarter-finals and top the pool, and we did it. It was a huge clash against Germany, and I also knew South Africa is a good team. They showed it today,” he said.

In the quarter-finals, France are set to face the winner of the last Group A match between Australia and Malaysia.

Source: The Sun